BBL: Thunder set sights on finals run after ‘rollercoaster’ season

After clinching a position in the BBL playoffs in the last match of the regular season, Jason Sangha feels the Sydney Thunder may create some shocks in the finals. After scraping into the top five, returning allrounder Jason Sangha feels the Sydney Thunder can create some mischief in the KFC BBL|12 playoffs. The Thunder secured the last position in the BBL playoffs with a dramatic three-wicket victory against the lowly Melbourne Stars on Wednesday night at the MCG.

BBL12, Thunder edge Stars in a tense finish to the regular season

BBL Thunder set sights on finals run after 'rollercoaster' season-1

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The Thunder jumped into fourth place to earn a home final, sending the Hobart Hurricanes down to sixth. On Friday night, the Thunder will play the Brisbane Heat at Sydney Showground Stadium. “Looking back on our season, it’s been a bit of a rollercoaster,” Sangha remarked after the Star’s triumph. The one bright spot is that we’ve found a way to win even in the most difficult conditions. All you need in the finals series is a few things to go your way.

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“For us, it’s just recognizing those important moments in a game, and if we can keep trying to link those pieces together, I believe we’ll go a long way. Sangha’s first game after breaking his collarbone on December 18 was against the Stars. Despite being chosen captain for this season, Sangha chose to delegate the role to Chris Green after the spinner took over for most of the competition after his injury. “It’s one less thing to be concerned about,” Sangha said.

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“I was already thinking about my shoulder in the field, but now that’s over and done with, I got my first dive out of the way, and it’s a little easier I was extremely touch and go for this game, I had to obtain some fitness tests and clearance from the surgeon, and it was a little bit up in the air. “So it was more of a choice that although I was 50-50, give it to Greeny just to make it official, and he’s been doing a tremendous job this season as well.”

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However, the Thunder will most likely be missing paceman Gurinder Sandhu against the Heat due to a calf ailment. “Hopefully he can get himself up for (Friday), and if he can’t, that’s OK because we have enough depth in this team,” Sangha added. Injuries are a difficult aspect of the game, and you never want them to happen to anybody, especially ‘G’ (Sandhu), who has done the same thing in two or three games.” The Thunder’s finals run appeared wobbly at times throughout the season, with the low point coming when they were all-out for a T20 record low of 15 against Adelaide.

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The winner of the Thunder-Heat game will return on Sunday night for another sudden-death battle against the Melbourne Renegades. If the Thunder win on Friday, David Warner will be eligible for both the Eliminator and the Knockout before the Test team embarks on a four-match Border-Gavaskar series in India. Perth and the Sydney Sixers will square off at Optus Stadium on Saturday night in front of up to 50,000 spectators. The victor of that match will host the final on February 4, while the loser will face the winner of Sunday’s encounter at Marvel Stadium.

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Pos.   Teams  P W L T NR RR Pts
Perth Scorchers
Perth Scorchers 14 11 3 0 0 1.205 22
Sydney Sixers
Sydney Sixers 14 10 3 0 1 0.846 21
Melbourne Renegades
Melbourne Renegades 14 7 7 0 0 -0.027 14
Sydney Thunder
Sydney Thunder 14 7 7 0 0 -0.716 14
Brisbane Heat
Brisbane Heat 14 6 7 0 1 -0.483 13
Hobart Hurricanes
Hobart Hurricanes 14 6 8 0 0 -0.34 12
Adelaide Strikers
Adelaide Strikers 14 5 9 0 0 -0.151 10
Melbourne Stars
Melbourne Stars 14 3 11 0 0 -0.287 6


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